Luke Steele admitted he hasn't been at his best so far this season and revealed a special cookie his mum made for him ahead of what would have been his 200th appearance for the club had to be given to his father's work colleagues after he was dropped.
Steele was axed for the Southampton Capital One Cup tie last month and was replaced by 41-year-old Mike Pollitt. He is stuck on 199 games. Steele told the Chronicle he was 'gutted' at being dropped but said he is determined to fight for his place in the first team.
He said: "My mum had made me a cookie cake saying '200 games today' and when I told her I'd been dropped they took it to my dad's office and gave it to all the staff, so at least it didn't go to waste. I missed out on a cookie cake but I've told her that when I get back in the team she needs to make sure I get another one.
"Anyone can be dropped, it doesn't matter if you're the captain. Obviously I was gutted when I was dropped but it's not about me. The manager has his job to do and he picks the team and I try and play to the best of my ability. I probably haven't been at full pelt so far this season but hopefully I'll be back in the side and helping us to win points soon.
"I don't know whether I felt a bit stale and perhaps my form was a mental thing. I wanted us to get off to a flying start but we lost to Wigan. " don't think I've been particularly bad, I just haven't been at my best. The manager decided to make a change and I have to go with that."
Steele, 28, has denied manager David Flitcroft's claims that he needed more competition and says that Ben Alnwick, who last week joined Charlton after having his contract at Oakwell terminated by mutual consent, is the best 'keeper he has worked with during his time at Barnsley.
Steele said: "With goalkeeping, it's not like a striker or a centre-half where you're pushing for a place, you just need the right mix of people, maybe an old and a young guy like me and Preecey (David Preece). Ben was the best 'keeper I've worked with while I've been here and he was pushing me enough.
"But the manager wanted a different mix with me and Mike Pollitt, who is here on loan at the moment. It's good to work with someone with a bit of experience. Mike has played many games before and now Ben has been able to go elsewhere to get more games so it's worked out for everyone."